Author Archive for Corey O'Brien

22
Mar
10

RST Boys Are Back!!!

That’s right the boys from  Right Side of the Tree are back.

Not only are they posting new YouTube videos on their channel, but have released two new songs for what else but Spring Break. Payne, Jones and Matty P hit the mics and the beats hard to re-make “Spring Break Anthem” for 2010 and have made a new drinking to sidekick the beer pong anthems, “Wanna Play Flip Cup?”.  The guys sound great and brought back their main man, Bizz, on both tracks. He has been recording a lot of tracks and mix-tapes on his own YouTube vids.  And even have Matty P is featured on the “Spring Break Anthem 2010”.  So hear are the tracks for ya….

“Wanna Play Flip Cup?”

and the re-make of  “Spring Break Anthem 2010”

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05
Jan
10

A “New Found Glory” Anniversary

A decade ago one album was created that once you started you could not stop playing over and over again. Not only was it a great album but it captured a moment in time for music. Yes there have great artist like Jay-Z, Radiohead and Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band that have released unbelievable albums this past decade but few can put you in moment of relevance with an age of music. We are quick to judge anything and in that case, anyone.  Few albums have a power that sticks to your musical connotations and when hearing a song from this album you become paralleled to another universe in your memory. It floats you back to a time of an unreal subconsciousness that makes you feel resonating thoughts of past events in your life. That is the power of a great album. Every decade there are only a few truly great album that amazes one’s ears to the heavens or the band’s majesty.

To create a great album words, choruses and melodies do not appear in a synchronized music sheet which is set to record.

How does any writer or self-genius music fan understand what ramifications make a great album? Well it has to include one sound unlike few bands can match and the entirety of the albums holds conformity. Today, music listeners get infatuated with two songs and called an artist the best or entitle him to some best record pedal stool. Well that’s shit covered fight that our record industry sits. A great album stands like a testimate to time. To you writers who declare albums great that only include songs that are somewhat noteworthy, I flip the bird to your columns and would gladly throw you in a mosh pit any day. . Even though it has aged, we can blow the layer of dust of the cover and listen to each track with a disillusioned hypnotism of musical prowess. Each song resonates with a jolt of energy as you listen to the artists heart and colorful lyrics make sense to its theme. When we could never put words together to tell a story we usually look to a mix-tape to tell our emotions and past lives.

An album entitled, New Found Glory, was born onto the world an amazing 10 years ago. Songs about the love heartbreaks and aches, muses and ex-girlfriends were broken into a picture perfect album. It became the bible of anthems of how to deal with heartbreak of a generation of punk rock music. With this record, we were given an anthem, a major-radio hit and a list of songs to last a lifetime. To make an entire record sound like a story a late teen to college student’s love life is impossibly. Few songs can capture a moment let alone a heartache story. But New Found Glory could not only put their efforts on to paper but match melodically in guitar and rhythm. They were the 20 year-olds trying to make a statement by signing onto a new label called Drive-Thru Records and toured the nation. Everywhere they went they had a crowd of legion of NFG fans.

In 2000, MCA Records joined with Drive-Thru Records to release the current quintet of Jordan Pundik, Steve Klein, Chad Gilbert, Ian Grushka and Cyrus Bolooki, major album release up on the world. Their first major release stayed on the Billboard Top 200 charts for a streak of 21 weeks. The punk rock band from Coral Springs, Florida, blazed a trail of stardom. From their 1999 release, Nothing Gold Can Stay, they made one of the biggest and quickest improvements from one album to the next. The self-titled album set the punk rock world in a friendzy.Alternative music had a new force to be reckoned with on the charts. The 12 songs on record were an infectious riot of love strong anthems to hearts and ears to whomever listened. And listened they did. That same year they were to set tour with the torchbearers of punk rock music, Blink-182. They were next in line to be crowned the best in the alternative music.

Their first single, “Hit or Miss”, hit number #15 on the Modern Rock chart. This righteous story of self preservation and angst stole the attention of fans across the nation and the world. New Found Glory began playing sold out shows everywhere and every fan new every word to the whole album. Every song was storybook into any life of NFG fan and soon they would become a band of a generation.

10years later, this storied quintet of unbelievably gracious guys have set to tour again with friends Saves the Day, Hellogoodbye and Fireworks. Except they want to give back to their fans like Bruce Springsteen and Jay-Z have done in the past. They will play their most influential album front to back to honor one of music’s greatest albums.  They will play the entire set and I am sure with other great hits off the other ten albums. Not only are they performing this unbelievable album on their next tour but they are set to re-release the album with b-sides, bonus tracks and DVD. So get because this is the “Ballad of the Lost Romantics”

04
Jan
10

Punk Rock Revolution

Punk music has always had a warning label on it and it was always handed to you from someone in a haz-mat suit. It has been the only genre of mass music that really hasn’t been fully accepted by the world population. The word “Sex” and “Pistols” have synonymous with the birth of punk music to the mainstream. When they screamed for anarchy all music fans ran to the hills. It was a revolt against conformity and the ideal. Any youth of spirit took the revolt and punk music slowly started to steamroll in the United Kingdom. The Punk movement took a long time to travel to the United States and like any movement before it took the underground. It started with Jazz in the 1920’s and white kids would sneak and go to black clubs to hear the best upbeat jazz. The underground swing movement started in the 40s and 50s and later with rock n’ roll in the early 60s.

But punk music didn’t take its full identity for a long time especially to today’s music fans. In early 1992, a band formed, left the underground punk scene in California and smeared America with its’ Dookie. Green Day’s first LP set the stage with hit songs like “Basket Case” and “Longview” that later became anthems. With ill witted themes of masturbation, boredom and never-ending adolescence anyone felt a part of a new generation. Even though they still put on some the best shows of all time against some of the best bands today, they are today’s godfathers to the punk scene. There is only one clause to their madness. The word “punk” still scared the American public. So the record industry was up with their mischievous ways and called the genre punk rock. This allowed kids to listen to punk music because it was apart of rock genre and it dealt the punk scene a royal flush to hit the big time. This is the Pop Punk Revolution.

Well how did music become pop? We really cannot track down the Pop Punk Revolution to one single moment of cosmic boom. But we can highlight the extraordinary factors that led to this revolution and its sudden end. Like many events in this world of social media, one juggernaut held the distinct power to many bands. The MySpace Generation. Not could music fans could connect to their fiends, they could connect to the music and bands that they love. Fans from around the country discovered bands from other states and through the America. An instant phenomenon was created and small record labels were sprung up all over the new pop punk nation. By the end of 1998, another band from Southern California met and broke through the radio airwaves with a bad word, “Dammit”.

Mark Hoppus, Tom DeLonge and later Travis Barker of Blink -182 commenced the start of the new revolution to mainstream media. Radio, television and everyone’s once favorite show Total Request Live all held red carpets to the princes of pop punk and band that were held to small regard and touring the small punk rock clubs were hitting stadiums and the summer’s Warped Tour. Punk rock music moved into a new phase of pop punk with its love woes and teenage restitution. Jeans with holes turned into long baggy shorts and regular shirts to turned into your favorite pop punk band’s tour shirt from that year. By the release of Enema of the State, Blink-182 captivated the world with “All the Small Things” and the rest was history.

Now all pop punk fans could find their own bands from Southern California to Coral Springs, Florida. If there was a small enough record label or a former band, a new pop punk was being signed. The Pop Punk Revolution allowed for any fan to find the music they wanted and ultimately become their favorite band. This led to fans trying to find themselves in the music. In 2000, the flux of pop punk was hitting the norm. That same year the greatest pop punk record was created. That band from Coral Springs, Florida, was New Found Glory and their rebellion of an album was their self-titled LP. It included the big hit “Hit or Miss”, the anthem “Ballad for the Last Romantics” and other hits like “Sucker” and “Dressed to Kill”. The album was a glass case of emotion ready to be broken by the ears of the new pop punk revolution.

After the initial uprising of pop punk to the mainstream of music, sub genres were being created like Emo and its counterpart Screamo. Emo was a soft punk style which laid heavily and just rhythmic guitar and witty lyrics than upon the music itself. This style of music was headed by band like Good Charlotte. It became a story of cries and hardships and never depending on the good in anything. Screamo was the “trying” of bands to sound hardcore with yells for choruses and short verses over pop punk melodies. This caused hundreds of bands to become one hit wonders on the charts and never lasted long on record labels. Bands without ever proving themselves were being signed to catch the buzz of Emo music. This caused the initial fall of a lot of record labels because all the funding was up front and the bands couldn’t last. By 2007, the phases would seize to exist.

In 2004, Blink-182 would release their last studio album, “….”. It showed a grown up sense of the band that we all grew up listening to. With songs like “I Miss You” and “Always” we knew it was a sad ending until their resurgence in 2009. But it was not an end of a genre. Green Day came back on to the mainstream with “American Idiot”. A political satire of the world that we all lived in today was unleashed on the charts and radio.. Punk rock was back. Bill Joe, Tre and Mike still are rocking today and have no sight of ending soon since they are still racking up album sales and awards every year.

Fans, especially writers like to classify bands like, New Found Glory as Pop or Emo but if you ask them you will get one answer only. Hell No. They like Blink did create their sound and stuck to it. They are now torch bearing Punk Rock for many bands to follow. On their 2009 release, Not Without a Fight proves the record industry that punk rock is not dead. They are probably one of the only bands to release eight albums and never stop touring the world in the past decade. So what started as Punk revolt has now triumphed as revolution a Punk Rock revolution.

16
Dec
09

The Next Greatest American Band in 2009



The most common phrase in the English language is repeated when one describes a place, person, or thing. That one advantageous adjective is the “Greatest”. We are use it to describe our favorite food or movie, but in this case we’re talking about the music. Who is the next “Greatest” American rock band?

First what makes a rock n’roll band great you might ask? Is it the band’s lists of Top 40 hits on the charts? Is it a popularity contest? An iconic fame or figure? Ticket sales? Or a string of successful albums? Since Beatlemania hit the soil of the United States we have been looking for the next “Greatest” band/supergroup. That’s like asking when the Apocalypse is going to happen. In America we have been tested by time to find this great American rock band and this definitely does not involve any game systems. There is a long list of great American bands starting from the late Sixties with The Grateful Dead and later Aerosmith in the 70’s. But we have also seen unbelievable great American acts been taken away from us like The Doors and Nirvana. They could have controlled the world but their legends live on.

In the latest Rolling Stone magazine issue, the writers/editors along with some of music scene’s best artist’s including Win Butler of The Arcade Fire expressed and voted best albums and songs from the past decade. We saw the rises and falls of artists and their genres. And now there is only one way to move on and that is to learn from music’s past. The mainstream of the musical airwaves have revolved like a record player starting with rock music. Then it led to laundry lists of sub genres that have the music scene. Emo, scream punk, crunk and freak folk music all rose and died in the past years. But with any great record has a strong finish and it has brought back the good ole rock n’ roll. Hopefully it controls the music scene. The music industry has no hand to control the scene of empowering artists anymore. Only true great rock bands like the Foo Fighters and Pearl Jam have lived their course and still continue to rule the world of rock music.

Now how do judge who is the next true American rock band? Is it ticket or album sales? Progression of music through the artist’s discography? Or does it come down to a popularity contest?

Let’s start about 15 years ago so we can understand the music scene with a short history brief. In 1994 the newest American rock scene had blown up in the city of Seattle with the stranglehold of Grunge. But in that same we saw its mountain top and death with the tragic passing of its heroin, Kurt Cobain. Nirvana not only ruled every college dorm room but the airwaves, concert venues and every pair of head phones that walked the planet. Bands like Pearl Jam and a year later, the Foo Fighters played to what is left to the of the nation of rock fans with hits like “Jeremy” and “Everlong”. But these hits could not stop the overhaul of sex symbols, one hit wonders and, of course, boy bands.

By the mid 90’s, the birth of Total Request Live scene took over and rock music was pushed aside, taken off record shelves and kicked off radio playlsits. TRL drove the entire listening generations into a vacuum of popular music industry. The image of an artist dominated over the music and shit hit the fan. They not only created superstars and made new sub genres popular but they also damned the rest. The new music became known as Rap Metal and its leader Limp Bizkit. They took pop hooks and mixed it with rock melodies to trick new music listeners this was rock n’ roll music. This allowed great bands like Radiohead to fly under the radar. Slowly Rap Metal dug its grave and pop punk was born to swoon the pop music world of the TRL kingdom. And soon a birth was beginning to be misled. TRL nation became divided as punk and pop punk drove fans to evolve the musical tastes and ears. Each fan was finally allowed to find their favorite band. This was also the start of an empire known as MySpace and the Warped Tour allowed new artists to get exposed. Any music fan could connect with huge acts/TRL favs like Blink-182 and The Offspring and discover new acts like Something Corporate and New Found Glory. During TRL’s reign there were some acts to appear and survive this trend like the Foo Fighters but rock was still trying to find itself.

In 2002, the birth of the musical festivals brought back revelation of rock music. Soon acts like U2 and Dave Matthews Band were touring the summer circuits and the end of pop punk music was dying with Good Charlotte. Rock music was starting to become reborn to its industrial form. It was time to get back to the basics and Bonnaroo and Lollapolooza allowed music fans to rediscover what was important to music. That is the live performance. Fans were getting to notice songwriting and bands that were once flying under the radar were starting to get noticed fast. The scene of rock music was restored to its rightful place at the top of the music chain. From our northern neighbors, the Arcade Fire’s Funeral was preempted to the  beat of the White Stripes’  “Seven Nation Army” and we were sealed by Radiohead’s Capitol (2002) musical prowess. Super artists Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones and Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band were going at it again. Top 40 radio stations starting to play rock music again and the playing was settled again to start another 1960’s rock rebellion due to the collapse of the music industry. Now music was at the forefront and rock n’ roll was ready kick ass.

But who is the next great American rock band? If it were due to legend then its Bob Dylan but he’s already an immortal rock god. And the following of the past of 25 years and still rocking award has to go to the Boss, Bruce Springsteen. The ticket sales award goes to the traveling and always great Dave Matthews Band whose latest release Big Whiskey & the GrooGrux King proved they still can rock with could be their best album to date. The men of rock award has to go to the ever talented Jack White and Dave Grohl. Both men keep rocking no matter what band there are with and lead a new generation of rock. But the new greatest America rock band that will represent a new era are the Kings of Leon. Their sound transcends time and they do not need any help rocking out stadium filled fans and each album keeps getting bigger and better. The Followhill family defines the true meaning of rock n’ roll dynasty. From their dysfunctional family relationship to earth shattering hits the KOL have the nation of rock music and its fist and ready to rock it more til its end.

15
Dec
09

Rain or Shine

I mentioned this a long time ago but its finally set in stone. O.A.R will be releasing their tow day live in concert album entitled, “Rain or Shine”. Their two night set list from Chicago’s Charter One Pavilion was sensational and the best to date. After last summer of a sold out show and an extra 200 tickets were created for the concert, O.A.R. knew that they must record a show with the city of Chicago playing background to their musical festival. This past summer of ’09 the band played two consecutive nights and was set to record the full length of the set lists. The first show opened with friends, Robert Randolph and the Family Band and the second show was interrupted by thunderstorms all day and the Wailers (Bob Marley’s former group) skipped the show. After a long delay, O.A.R. came out and rocked a rain soaked crowd. Not only did they record all the fans favorites for the album but also kept all the acoustic sets from both performances. For all O.A.R. fans you have been appreciated for the first three live albums (Any Time Now, 34th and 8th, and Live from Madison Square Garden). These tow disc sets have captured the moment of a one the greatest live performing band from U.S. but the band has taken it a step further for all to enjoy. They are collectively releasing all 37 songs from both concert dates including a performance of Led Zeppelins “Fool in the Rain” with Robert Randolph and the Family Band. Also for the first time, the band recorded “Tonight” which was their first song ever written and “Rhythm of Your Shoes”. The album can be pre-ordered on their website along with a deluxe edition that includes pictures of the live performance and a signed setlist from either date.

These two shows were phenomenal including the rained out party on the second night. I was also lucky to work and hang with the band as well that night and week later was confirmed from the band that there recording the show for a possible live album. So “Get Away” and get ready to dive into one great four disc live album. It will be released on January 12th, 2010. I will put out another post before then to remind all you readers. Here are the set lists from both nights. Enjoy….

NIGHT 1 – DISC 1:
1. About Mr. Brown 6:39
2. Living in the End 4:12
3. Right on Time 6:07
4. So Moved On 7:48
5. Risen 4:05
6. Dinner Last Night 4:40
7. Tonight 4:52
8. Conquering Fools 5:21
9. About an Hour Ago 8:22

NIGHT 1 – DISC 2:
1. I Feel Home 5:57 (Acoustic Set)
2. The Wanderer 4:58 (Acoustic Set)
3. Shattered 4:53 (Acoustic Set)
4. That Was a Crazy Game of Poker 9:07 (Acoustic Set)
5. On My Way 5:58 (Acoustic Set, Electric)
6. Black Rock 5:57
7. Lay Down 7:22
8. War Song 7:44
9. This Town 6:27
10. Fool in the Rain* 7:21
11. Love and Memories 5:23

*Featuring Robert Randolph

NIGHT 2 – DISC 3:
1. Revisited 6:33
2. Night Shift 3:53
3. Someone in the Road 3:32
4. Whose Chariot 9:09
5. King of the Thing 4:24
6. On Top The Cage 7:00
7. Here’s to You 7:34
8. Untitled 7:53
9. Hey Girl 8:23

NIGHT 2 – DISC 4:
1. What is Mine 5:40
2. Delicate Few 8:51
3. City on Down 5:49
4. Whatever Happened 5:34
5. Get Away 8:40
6. Rhythm of your Shoes 5:44
7. Shattered 5:03
8. That Was a Crazy Game of Poker 15:02

BONUS DOWNLOAD (Acoustic set):
1. I Feel Home
2. The Wanderer
3. Shattered
4. That Was a Crazy Game of Poker
5. On My Way

23
Nov
09

Authenticity?

First all you music readers and listeners need to go see the movie, Pirate Radio. It is the true story of rock and pop radio stations moving to the seas to broadcast music like the Beatles to the people of the United Kingdom. Most of the music in the 1960’s was seen as unbroadcastible to the U.K.’s government. So they music lovers moved to seas to broadcast until later shut down all music took over. Now on too the blog….

The music scene is filled with an array of musical artists trying to become the top recording artist not only in their respected genre. Most artists entirely write all their songs and some artists have their record labels assist the writing/creative process. The creative process starts and ends with the artist whether its a band or only a singer.  When our entire world and knowledge is based on creativity then can we justify what is authentic? The art of music is the best known free way of expression. Without creativity then music would never structure itself and evolve into what it is today.

The reason I am asking myself this question is that with the music world today there so many genres to say “that’s music what music is supposed to sound like”.  We could sound like our parents or our parent’s parents say that music lost its edge in the 60’s-70’s.  In the summer of 2008, Lil Wayne sold 1 million records within his first week with two songs “Lollipop” and “A Milli”. These two songs when looked back on were great yet not looked upon as the best songs even by Lil Wayne. “Lollipop” was an autotune success but is that authentic or just creative. We all know Weezy does not sound that good when he sings as goes for Britney Spears. But we all as fans come to accept it. So is Britney Spears authentic with most songs written for her and her voice is doubled and autotuned most of the time? Or do we look the other way? No music supporter cannot say she is “not” being creative but she brought a new sound to the female pop world. If this makes entire sense  to the music world, then all boy bands are as creative as the Jonas Brothers. The Jonas Brothers at least play their music and are very heavy handed when it comes to producing and writing their songs. So are they the same as some new pop star with all his music and writing is given to him.

During last night’s broadcast of the European Music Awards, Jay-Z was voted as the “Best Urban Artist” of 2009. When he accepted his award and thanked the fans but told everyone that he wishes that he could see the day when all music can be known as one because artists like himself and Green Day plus the other artists on the stage as U2 and the Jonas Brothers. Jay-Z told the crowd that we all go into the recording studio the same way and record and write songs for you. Well if Jay-Z understands it then music is music. And we can all go on since Mr. Sean Carter said so. So respect and support music no matter what.

10
Nov
09

New Music Nov. 11th

Here’s some new songs for your musical enjoyment and listening pleasure. I am going to try to keep this up as a regular basis. So you guys can give me any suggestions if u want to add new music or want me to talk about new bands. But here are the new songs along with some remixes/mashups that you will enjoy. Plus I got the best “Forever” by Drake ft. Kanye, Weezy and Eminem. The first track is a new hip-hop song that will be on at the bars and clubs soon. I decided to put up T-Pain’s “Take Your Shirt Off”. Yeah it brings back memories of Petey Pablo “North Carolina”. But another good song to look out for is Pitbull Ft. Akon “Shut It Down”.  But T-Pain’s first official single is a club sound with some southern swag. Here it is “Take Your Shirt Off”…..

Over three years ago this man was on top of the music world. He is not only a great artist but one of the best producers or our time. That’s right, it’s Timbaland. In the same year he had an unbelievable be released but also produced great a #1 album for Nelly Furtado. Now Timbaland is coming out with Shock Value 2. Here is another hit byTimbaland featuring his good friend Nelly Furtado and newcomer SoShy, “Morning After Dark”….

From the Indie side of music I got one artist you need to check out and a new song.  Owl City’s new single, “Vanilla Twilight” is going to be another indie hit I feel. As for the artist, he is a Montreal based name producer named Tor. He’s matched up with great indie artist, Surfjan Stevens. Tor mixed some of Surfjan Steven’s songs and layed them over some big hip-hop names lyrics and tracks over Steven’s choruses. The project is known as Illinoize. Tor even put Outkast and Big Daddy Kane on these remixed tracks. The album has a great sound that is hard to describe because these mashups are the first of their kind. Tor meixed his own track from his 2005 LP and then mashed them to Surfjan Steven’s tracks.  The best part about the project is that this little project is available for download for free.

Finally heere some of the mixes and mashups I enjo with some of the music on the radio today. But first my boys from Right Side of the Tree have done it again. They are back to remixing new hip-hop songs to the style of the drinking anthems. Now they rapped each part of the the artists style to perfection. Their remix of “Forever” is pretty damn funny as well. Here it is …”(Drunk as Shit) Forever”

Here are the other remixes/mashups/dance remixes that I wanted to let you know about:

I Kissed a Girl, Just Dance/ Dangerous

Love is Gone Mashup

And my favorite… David Guetta Mix